Christchurch House Price Record Smashed

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‘Broke $9m’: Christchurch house price record smashed for second time in a matter of weeks

Christchurch’s house price record has tumbled for the second time in less than a month, after a large property on the hillside suburb of Scarborough sold off-market for more than $9 million.

Harcourts Holmwood agent Grant Chappell, who brokered the deal, told OneRoof he was unable to disclose much about the sale but he was confident it was a new high for the city’s housing market.

Last week, OneRoof reported industry rumours that prominent Christchurch developer Philip Carter had sold his luxury home on Whitewash Head Road, dubbed The Rocks and also in Scarborough, for more than $8m.

The sale price, which remains private, supposedly pipped the previous $8m record, jointly held by two properties – one of which sold at the start of March.

Chappell was unable to reveal the exact sale price of his Scarborough Hills property before settlement, but confirmed it “broke $9m”.

He said both the buyer and seller were private people who wished to remain anonymous.

However, he was able to reveal some details of deal. He said he had approached the owners of the property after receiving an expression of interest from a buyer.

They told him they would sell if he found them a smaller property in the suburb. “They just wanted to downsize a wee bit to get rid of all their land. They’ve bought a beautiful property close by which is of similar size, but they don’t have the big section to maintain anymore.”

Chappell said the vendors’ house had been rebuilt since the Christchurch earthquakes and was located in the “most magical setting”.

“You don’t look at another house, you don’t see any other roofs, you just look out and you just see the ocean and the beach. It’s a very, very magical site and approximately 2000sqm in size so it’s a big site and it’s got a magnificent garden.”

He said the house had “plenty of bedrooms and bathrooms, high specification features” and a swimming pool.

Chappell wasn’t surprised that Scarborough was home to two of the city’s most expensive homes because the cost of land per metre in the suburb was more expensive than other wealthy suburbs like Fendalton.

“That’s what people don’t realise. It’s so unique up there. It’s a unique part of the town,” he told OneRoof.

“To me, Scarborough is a hidden secret. If all the private schools were in Sumner, a lot more people would live in Scarborough and you’d get even more for the houses because there’s so few of them. It’s the most special part of the world – you go up there and Sumner Beach is in front of you, you can hear the ocean crashing on the beach. It is magnificent.”

Chappell told OneRoof he had also just completed another off-market deal in the $7ms for a 300sqm full-floor apartment with an upmarket fit-out in Upper House on Park Terrace.

He had been working with a couple looking for an apartment in the city so approached the owners, who had told him they were ready to move back to the suburbs and own a lawnmower again.

The above properties were among the five sales in Christchurch that surpassed the $7m mark in March. OneRoof understands the fifth sale to surpass this high threshold was a builder’s own home on Clifford Avenue, in Fendalton.

Chappell said the latest record was a big jump from when he sold two large houses on Fendalton Road, in Fendalton, for just over $2.7m in 2001, which made headlines at the time for being the city’s new record. He did not think it would be too long until Christchurch saw its first $10m sale, adding it would easily happen within the next two years if not before.

“There’s money out there. I look at all the people who have done all these deals and you look at them and we’ve got an ageing population, we’ve got people reaching retirement age and they’ve sold their businesses, they’ve worked hard and all of a sudden there’s a bit of money floating around.” All the buyers he had worked with on these deals were over the age of 60 and from Christchurch.

While Christchurch prices still lag behind Auckland and Queenstown, when it comes to the upper end (the top price in Auckland is just under $40m and the top price in Queenstown is over $40m), they pointed to confidence in the market.